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Guns, ammunition … even boats: how Oath Keepers planned an armed coup | US Capitol Attack

Accusation of incendiary conspiracy against Oath Keepers militia leader Ten other people involved in the January 6 Capitol attack revealed an armed plot against American democracy, including tactical plans and formidable weapons.

Court documents opened Thursday provide the most detailed explanation to date of the level of plans by the far-right militia in the assault on the Houses of Parliament, aimed at shattering proof of Joe Biden’s election victory. To do.

The document describes the creation of a swift response team of armed militia members, the deployment of tactical equipment, and the stockpiling of weapons in a deliberate attempt to overturn the Democratic Joe Biden election that defeated Donald Trump. I am.

On January 6, thousands of Trump riots raided the building, injuring police officers and fleeing lawmakers. Five people died around the incident, including parliamentary police officers and Trump supporters shot by law enforcement agencies. Attempts to prevent Biden from becoming president failed.

The federal indictment said Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the far-right radical group Oath Keepers, colluded with 10 other members to force opposition to the legitimate transfer of presidential power. Insist. This group has deployed armed members on the outskirts of Washington to serve as a so-called “quick reaction force” team.

Oath Keepers also discussed naval operations in which the militia was pointed at the gun and carried by ferry. One vow keeper, Thomas Caldwell, asked fellow members if anyone had a boat that could cross the Potomac River. “If someone is waiting at the dock ramp (certainly near the Pentagon), we have a quick response team waiting for heavy weapons, quickly load them, and cross the river to me. You can take it by ferry to our waiting arms, “the document quoted his words.

Rhodes continued to buy in the days leading up to the attack, spending more than $ 20,000 on guns and equipment for the attack. In December, Rhodes purchased two sets of night-vision goggles and a weapons site for about $ 7,000 and shipped them to Virginia. In January, he spent an additional $ 5,000 on shotguns, scopes, magazines, sights, optics, bipods, mounts, ammunition cases, and gun cleaning supplies. Two days later he spent another $ 6,000 and the next day about $ 4,500.

Stewart Rose. Photo: Jim Urukhart / Reuters

In a group chat, Oath Keepers set up a Quick Reaction Force (QRF) team at the Comfort Inn in Ballston, Arlington, Virginia, to discuss how to “use it as a base for operations on January 6, 2021.” They booked 3 rooms. One was occupied by the so-called North Carolina “QRF” team, while the Arizona and Florida “QRF teams” remained the other two. They used a hotel room to store firearms and ammunition.

“It’s easy to dismiss many of the indictments as fantasy as a projection of what Oath Keepers wants to see, but the January 6th event could make these things happen very quickly. It reminds us of something, “said Devin Berghart. Secretary-General of the Institute for Human Rights Research and Education, a group that monitors far-right radical groups.

“No matter what their ability to realize all their fantasies, the danger is there,” Burghart said.

Some operational plans appeared to have started shortly after the election last November, as Mr. Trump disputed the outcome of the election without grounds. Two days after the election, Rhodes invited some members of Oath Keepers to a group chat on Signal, an encrypted messaging app.

Rhodes sent a text message to the group as follows: It’s too late for that. Prepare your mind, body and spirit. “

On November 7, 2020, when Trump was predicted to eventually lose the election, Rhodes began planning and sent a text message to Group Chat. Refuse to accept it and march to the Capitol all at once. Next, Rhodes shared a video about Bitchute, an Alt-tech video platform, with step-by-step steps on how to overthrow the government based on the Serbian example.

Two days later, Rhodes held an online meeting with Oath Keepers members to outline plans to overturn the election. Two days later, group member Coldwell contacted Rhodes to inform Washington of the results of the military colloquial expression “reconnaissance” for a reconnaissance operation, and to plan the next “operation” to the Capitol. have started.

From there the members started working together. In late November, the Florida branch of Oath Keepers trained on “unconventional warfare.” “It’s going to be a bloody and desperate fight. We’re going to fight. It’s inevitable,” Rhodes wrote in a group chat with members in December.

On December 21, 2020, Oath Keepers first mentioned January 6. James Wakins, one of the 11 Oath Keepers charged in the case, sent a text message to a signal chat about “January 6 Washington DC National Action Request” and Oath Keepers in three states. Said that he was mobilizing. I just said, “Wakins wrote.

Rhodes told the leader of the Oath Keepers in the region when Biden became president: That’s what has to happen. “

At 6:27 am on January 6, Rhodes sent a text message to the group chat as follows:

The remaining teams at the Virginia hotel discussed the possibility of “armed conflict” and “guerrilla warfare.”

At Capitol, Oath Keepers marched in platoons, carrying radios, chemical sprays, hard knuckle gloves, and tactical equipment such as protective vests, helmets, and eye goggles. In a group chat, one member shared rumors that it was the Left Group that broke the Capitol. “No, I’m here. These are Patriots,” Rhodes replied.

Rhodes never entered the Capitol, but other members of Oath Keepers did. Jessica Watkins sent a text message in one of the Oath Keepers group chats as follows: We are shaking it. They are throwing grenades, they are funny shooting people with a ball of paint. But we are here. Another member enthusiastically replied that this was what they were “trained”.

According to the indictment, Watkins and other Oath Keepers joined a mob pushing a line of law enforcement officers to the Senate in a corridor containing a rotunda. Watkins ordered the people around her to “push, push, push … get in there.” , Get there. “

Guns, ammunition … even boats: how Oath Keepers planned an armed coup | US Capitol Attack

Source link Guns, ammunition … even boats: how Oath Keepers planned an armed coup | US Capitol Attack

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